1COM 4523 PUBLIC RELATIONS CASE STUDIES FALL 2021 Instructor: Dr. Ali Kanso El-Ghori Office Hours: TH: 1:30-2:30 E-mail: [email protected]TEXT Darrel Hayes, Jerry Hendrix and Pallavi Kumar,Public Relations Cases, 9th Edition. Thomson Wadsworth Corporation, 2013. COURSE OBJECTIVES The course brings public relations to life in a way that classroom lectures cannot. Dealing with up-to-date cases is a very effective approach to learn about the applications of public relations theories and concepts. The main purpose of this course is to provide students with opportunities to articulate their personal judgment and knowledge. Thus, it is geared to help future practitioners develop agility in the principles and applications of effective two-way communication in a wide variety of situations likely to confront them and their employers. At the end of the course, each student should be able to: 1.Apply public relations concepts and theory to solve problems and improve thinking. 2.Learn to analyze and critically evaluate ideas, arguments, and viewpoints. 3.Acquire skills in working with others as a member of a team. 4.Develop specific skills and competencies needed by public relations practitioners. 5.Understand the basics of strategic management communication. 6.Conduct primary and secondary research. COURSE FORMAT Class meetings will be conducted on a top management/executive employee professional basis. They will be devoted to case studies, oral presentations, reviews, and critiques. Each student will handle four case studies/problems and one major in-depth study of an organization of his/her choice. In addition, several class exercises will be done in groups to encourage the exchange of ideas regarding the proposed solutions to the problems under investigation. You are expected to keep with the assigned readings before coming to class. Handouts, notes, and lecture overheads from previous classes are not available from the instructor. Thus, you should exchange phone numbers and e-mail addresses with two classmates so that you can make copies of such materials if necessary. I don't cover any day's lecture twice. ASSIGNMENTS The four cases/problems will cover a variety of issues such as employer/employee relations, home/community relations, consumer relations, media relations, special interests, minority interests, crisis communication, standards and ethics. In each case you will have to prepare a short report (three to four pages). The report should explain the complexity of the case/problem and provide a sound analysis of actions taken. Each report will be worth twenty points. Students will be called to present and discuss their reports.
2The major case study will be in-depth study of a business firm, organization, department on campus or a particular public relations effort within a company. The study cannot be done properly in one or two weeks. It will take the whole term. The appropriate length of the case should be 10-12 pages, plus a completed outline and bibliography. It will require considerable research and contacts with those in charge and those affected by the organization. I will entertain the possibility of letting two students work together on the same major study. However, the length of the study in this scenario is expected to be 15 to 20 pages, plus a completed outline and bibliography. BySeptember 23rd, the organization should be selected. On that date, you will submit a typed statement indicating the name of the organization you plan to study and the reasons for your selection. The instructor's approval must be obtained before you begin working on your research. OnOctober 28th,you will turn in an outline of your progress on the major case project. The outline will be discussed in class. Failure to meet the September 23rdand October 28th deadlines will affect your course grade. Detailed guidelines for the major case study are attached. All assignments must be typed, double-spaced and submitted in hard copies. They will be checked for soundness of research methods, content, style, and grammar. A severe penalty will be imposed on poor grammar, confusing writing, spelling errors, typographical errors, incorrect punctuation, incomplete bibliographic information, missing or out-of-order pages, and hand- written sections or corrections. There is no excuse for sloppy work. Always proofread and double-check your work. E-mail copies of assignments will not be accepted. POLICIES Class Attendance You will be allowed three excused/unexcused absences during the term. No matter what the circumstances are, each additional absence will lower your final grade a half-letter grade. Attendance will be taken in the first ten minutes of each class. After that grace period, you will be considered absent. You must keep track of the dates and number of classes you miss. Bear in mind that my record of attendance is undisputable. Thus, I can only compare my record with your list of absences if a need arises. Also, you are responsible for all information missed during an absence. Classroom Civility We want to build a classroom climate that is comfortable for all. In a communication class, it is especially important that we (1) display respect for all members --including the professor and fellow classmates; (2) pay attention to and participate in all class sessions and activities; (3) avoid unnecessary disruption during class time; and (4) avoid racist, sexist, homophobic or other negative language that may unnecessarily exclude members of our campus and classroom. This is not an exhaustive list of behaviors; rather, it represents the minimal standards that help make the classroom a productive place for all concerned. No Use of Cell Phones Make sure you turn off your pagers and cell phones when the class is held.They are strictly prohibited. If you are caught using a cellular phone for making/receiving calls, sending/receiving text messages or even recording, your behavior will be considered as class disruption. Therefore, a disciplinary action will be taken against you.
3Use of E-Mails Emails are the best method to communicate with the instructor, especially during office hours. You can ask questions about class materials, seek feedback on you work progress, draw attention to dispute with team members, etc. In-depth questions about course readings or entire day's lecture, as well as questions about grades, are not appropriate for e-mails. Cheating and Plagiarism Cheating and plagiarism will NOT be tolerated. Thus, all work you submit must be original and intended for this course only (no submission of the same assignment in more than one class). Please see the University'sStudent Code of Conductfor information regarding this policy.Any student whom the instructor has sufficient evidence to believe has cheated or plagiarized in the course will receive an automatic "F" (failure) in the entire course. Academic Withdrawal from the Course Please note on ASAP the final date to withdraw from an individual course.After that date, you may withdraw from the university through Monday of the last week of classes but may no longer withdraw from an individual course.Academic withdrawal is processed and approvedby the COLFA advising Center, not by your professor, and will only be approved with evidence of extreme and unanticipated circumstances that prevent completion of an individual course. Assigning a Grade of "Incomplete" Incompletes will be given only when they meet thePolicy for Incompleteson file in the Department of Communication office, as well as the University requirements for Incompletes as specified in theHandbook of Operating Procedures. SPECIAL NEEDS If you have any condition, such as physical or learning disability, which will make it difficult for you to carry out the work as I have outlined it or which will require special academic accommodations, please see a coordinator at Student Disability Services (SDS) located in Multidisciplinary Studies Bldg. 3.01.16 (Main Campus) and Buena Vista Bldg. 1.302 (Downtown Campus) so that accommodations may be arranged. After you receive your accommodation letter, meet with me for an action plan. Information regarding diagnostic criteria and policies for obtaining disability-based academic accommodations can be found at www.utsa.edu/disabilityor by calling 210 458-4157 and (210) 458-2945. COUNSELING SERVICES Counseling Services provide confidential, professional services by staff psychologists, social workers, counselors and psychiatrists to help meet the personal and developmental needs of currently enrolled students. Services include individual brief therapy for personal and educational concerns, couples/relationship counseling, and group therapy on topics such as college adaptation, relationship concerns, sexual orientation, depression and anxiety. Counseling Services also screens for possible learning disabilities and has limited psychiatric services. Visit Counseling Services athttp://utsa.edu/counsel/or call (210) 458-4140 (Main Campus) or (210) 458-2930 (Downtown Campus).